Aged Care Terrifies Student Nurses

Two nursing schools claim that far-reaching modification is required as to how aged care nursing is being taught in universities, if aged care should draw in nurses needed to care for the raising population of the elderly for the next few years.

Even though it has been more than ten years of concentrated efforts to boost nursing undergraduates’ experience with aged care nursing, student awareness of gerontic nursing career still stay very negative. A research revealed this finding, delivered last week during the 9th Asian Oceana Gerontology and Geriatrics Congress in Melbourne.

The research, carried out by Southern Cross University Associate Professor John Stevens, was a follow-up investigation which mirrors the research project that Professor Stevens had begun in 1995 for his PhD.

Professor Stevens followed the opinions of students in six nursing degree courses, in the 1995, research in New South Wales. The research asked students, depending on their learning as well as personal experience of placements, to provide rankings, in the order of their inclination, to ten various nursing practice areas where they would like to work. The rankings were calculated throughout the 3-year degree course to determine if and in what manner the nursing students’ opinion and awareness regarding aged care nursing differed over the time.

The 1995 study discovered that students who are in their first year had fairly low eagerness of a career in aged care nursing but their views are not yet formed strongly, giving aged care a ranking of seventh in a list containing ten nursing practice areas. But, come their second year and after being exposed to practical placements in care of the aged, the students’ primary opinions only got stronger, ranking aged care ninth. By their third year, the students have given aged care a ranking of tenth, or the last, on their list of ideal nursing career areas.

During the 2010 survey, although the mentioned reasons have altered, the rankings for aged care that were given by nursing students who are in first, second and third year, as opposed to all the other nine areas, stay the same.

Professor Stevens stated he was very disappointed personally with the outcomes of the study.

He said that after every effort that he and his colleagues have included in order to boost both the image and experience of aged nursing for the past ten years, he expected that things would be better, but he was proven wrong, and said he was disappointed. He continued to say that included in the efforts that were carried out to boost the image of aged care nursing included an improved training to supervisors, diminished student ratios, acquiring more aged care specialist as part of the teaching program, and lessons for nursing home staff in order to allow the students to feel welcome.

He stated that they have attempted to deal with the balance of weight that was assigned to aged care as opposed to acute care and the other areas. However, there exists a touch connection between the amount of time allotted in practical placements and outlook to aged care. It was mainly that the more time spent on working with the elderly, the less that they want to work with them, he stated. The only difference between the two surveys pertained to the causes the students provided for the low rankings.  In 1995, it revealed that the basic variation was that the nurses mentioned that they did not like the areas that they had to go to. According to the nurses, nursing home were unpleasant places to be employed. By 2010, they claimed that it would give their career a negative effect.

Among the things they said included: forgetting how to inject, inability to utilize every skill, or what are the chances for becoming a CNC. They stated that they would like a career that would allow them to create a difference, but with aged care nursing, they only view it as handling slow death.

Professor Stevens said that the subjects said they wanted to get a job where people are able to go somewhere. They say that intensive care is where the action is. The biggest problem is status. They think that aged care is “low tech”. Despite them getting the pay disparity correct, issues regarding status needs to be examined. It is something that the profession holds little to no value, Professor Stevens continued.

Professor of Aged Care Nursing Andrew Robinson, head of the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Centre teaching aged care facility course at the University of Tasmania, stated that his own study reveals the same outcomes.

He claimed that the lessons about aged care nursing must have an incorporated, well-planned approached founded on proof, as rather than gradual efforts.

Professor Robinson went on to say that student outlook to aged care worsens over time mainly because in most curricula, ageing is not addressed in an important way, not addressing the entire matter of the elderly in a manner that is important for these young professionals in the health care field.

Professor Robinson said that in their aged care facility, the students claimed that they understood and appreciated the significance of viewing the elderly in a non-acute phase. Because if not, how else will they know how an older person might appear or what they will be like regularly if they are never seen outside an acute phase?

If the nurses are exposed to a person with dementia then they could get scared. But provided with training as well as experience in research about those with dementia, then it turns into something interesting. It has to be approached with the right strategy, not only reactive, as well as the fact that it has to be founded on evidence.

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